2017 – Year In Review

As 2017 comes to a close, I wanted to take a quick look back and go over everything that’s happened in this crazy year.

I’ll follow this up with my usual “My Favorite Stuff of” post with my favorite movies and music and stuff like that, but this is about me and my career. What did I accomplish? Lets make a list…

  • At the end of 2016 I had just released my newest album Head Like Fire and the music video “Butterfly” (directed by Tobias Steiner). A lot of 2016 was spent promoting this album and continuing to push it various ways. The “Butterfly” video quickly became my most watched traditional music video and has continued to rack up plays throughout the year. The album has gotten a ton of great feedback as well and I’m very proud of this album, even though making it took quite a bit out of me and led to me starting 2017 off with a big break.
  • Well, the break didn’t quite start until I finished scoring the film “Croak” (directed by Matt Barrett). “Croak” was mostly finished in 2016 but I had to put some finishing touches on it, and the film made the festival rounds this year and did really great. It won a bunch of awards and I was nominated twice for Best Score! It’s one of my favorite things I’ve worked on and hopefully it will be online for everyone to see soon.
  • At the beginning of the year I also was invited to the Adelson School to discuss composing music for film to a couple of classes of film and music students. It was pretty fun and I showed them a bunch of my work and talked about various aspects of the business and the creative process. I also gave them all a copy of my CD to which one of the kids said “I don’t even have anything to play this with.” Kids…
  • It was about then that I took my first break of the year. It was glorious. I did NOTHING for a while. I’m gonna do that again soon…
  • Somewhere around the break time is when Bea Landers finished my second music video from Head Like Fire, the stop-motion animated “Back Into The Dark.” This video is not only amazing to me still to this day, but it’s been my most successful music video, getting 12 Official Selections from film festivals around the world and winning Best Music Video at the Laughlin International Film Festival. “Back Into the Dark” is a huge achievement for me and I’m so proud of it.

  • And “Back Into The Dark” wasn’t even my most viewed music video of the year. Following that up was the “Constellations 360” Virtual Reality music video created by New Line Videography. I demoed it at a number of events throughout the spring and summer, and Google put it on their Virtual Reality YouTube channel which gave it such a huge boost… Over 100,000 plays on there alone, and it did great on other sites too, coming in right around 150,000 if I add it all up. What an amazing video. We were working on a follow-up to be released at Halloween but ended up changing course on the design for it but will definitely be releasing the follow-up in 2018.
  • I didn’t score a lot of films in 2017. I did one called “To Cherish A Time” for my frequent collaborator Chris Johnson (who also made me my beautiful 4th music video from Head Like Fire for the song “Trying Again”). Another for director Michael Evans called “Affirmations” which came out really great and hopefully you’ll be able to see soon. Same goes for “The Slaughtering Grounds” from Dane Keil which will hopefully be available for you all to see soon. I also scored two 48 Hour Film Projects, one with Doug Farra here in Las Vegas and one with Ben Yonker in Indiana (I have worked on 48 Hour films with them almost every year now).
  • I did have music in some films though. I did the music for the scary-doll horror film “Heidi” (which is available now on VOD and also the main theme from which I released as a single and a music video for it was released as well). I also did the main theme and some extra songs for a really fun movie called “Bus Party To Hell” from the Mahal Brothers and Rolfe Kinesky which stars Tara Reid. It’s a totally over-the top boobs and blood gore horror-comedy and will get a big release in 2018. The premiere was a wild, fun time and I think people will really dig this movie and the theme I made for it.

  • Last year I got my first BMI royalty check and they’ve continued to come every quarter this year. Seeing that continue has been very inspiring and I’m really excited to see my music continue to be used in all kinds of TV shows… Well not really ALL kinds… Mostly dark stuff about murder and crime haha. But that’s fine with me.
  • Towards the end of the year I released my new single and music video “Secrets” (the video was directed by Kate Woodman). This will be the kick-off to my new plan for 2018 where I start releasing singles and EPs rather than full length albums. I’m really excited about it and the new songs that are coming are really something. I can’t wait for you all to hear them.

  • I also released a 15 year anniversary re-release of my old comedy-rap group’s album. You can read more about it on the blog post about it… I’m not going to go into it more here haha. Enter at your own risk haha.
  • I’m finishing the year off by getting started on the score for “Miner’s Mountain” a great short film by some of the same people who made “Croak.” It’ll be my first project I complete in 2018, so it’s cool to begin and end the year in that way.

Two more things to mention before I close this up and get back to work… First of all I’d be lying if I said I managed to get my This Thing Rules review blog series back on track the way I’d hoped. Those just keep getting put on the back-burner. I did release some great new ones in 2017, but not at the rate I had hoped. What are you gonna do though? When you’re busy, you’re busy (even if busy means taking a much needed break haha). I still plan on finishing every one of the reviews that I’ve started, so definitely keep an eye out for more of them. Once they’re all done we’ll see what happens with the series from there.

And last but not least, probably the biggest development of 2017 was the death of Cakewalk. I’ve spent my entire career, 21 years, creating music with software from Cakewalk, from Cakewalk Pro Audio 4, upgrading almost every year as the name changed to Sonar and then onto the most recent Sonar Platinum. A few years back Gibson (yes the guitar company) bought Cakewalk and promised it would only mean good things for the future, but alas, here we are… Cakewalk is dead, Sonar is dead… The software installed on my computer will continue to run for the time being, but it’s basically obsolete. Maybe not today, but one day in the probably near future. So I took the fact that it happened right before Black Friday and there was some great Black Friday deals on every competing DAW available  as a sign and spent a whirlwind 72 hours researching as hard as I could every other DAW and settled on PreSonus Studio One 3 Pro. So while I still have plenty of old songs to finish up in Sonar, I am now working on all new projects in Studio One. It’s crazy switching from something that has been the center of your creative life for over 20 years… But you know what, it’s been a surprisingly easy change and in some ways I’m working better and faster than ever before. Studio One so far has been a fantastic program and if it doesn’t get in the way of my creativity as I start working on “Miner’s Mountain” I’ll be willing to say that I’m almost happy to have moved on. Maybe I needed this change. We’ll see what happens.

Thanks for all the support in 2017. I hope you enjoyed listening to what I put out there. There’s going to be a ton of new music in 2018.

David Rosen is an award-winning music composer. He composes original music for films, commercials, jingles, video-games and all other kinds of media projects. He has a vast music library of original tracks available for licensing and is also available for custom compositions. Contact him on the ABOUT page for pricing and availability for your next project.

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